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German Law/Child support in Germany


I have a 18 year old daughter, from a previous marriage living in Germany, I am in US......   I have been paying child support the whole time since 2000,  My question 1. how long do I have to continue paying,   and 2. do I have to continue to pay now that she is 18, living on her own, had a job but quit it because she didn't feel like working any more,   and is living off the German welfare system and with her boyfriend?

Hello Stephen,

German child support law does not have a clear cut-off age at 18 or at any other age. Child support is due as long as your child is in education or training and cannot support herself financially.

In the case of your daughter, it sounds as if she is neither studying nor in training, at least not seriously, so you do not have any obligation to support her anymore.

However, if there is a court order for child support, that means that you would need to get this court order amended, unless you can get your daughter to send you something in which she says that she won't enforce it anymore. Otherwise, the court order might continue to be valid (depending on its wording) and you would run up arrears.

Andreas Moser

German Law

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Andreas Moser


Extensive experience in international family law, especially international child abductions and child custody cases. All other areas of German law as well: constitutional law, criminal law, business and contract law, immigration law, inheritance law, and so on.


Lawyer in Germany from 2002 to 2009. Lawyer for US Army JAG Corps before. Bar-certified specialisation in family law and in administrative law. Articles and lectures about international and domestic family law.


2000 Law Degree from University of Regensburg, Germany 2002 admitted to the bar (until 2009) 2013 MA Philosophy at the Open University, UK

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